Sheboygan County Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in Sheboygan County. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in Sheboygan County.
Burden of Proof
The burden of proof is always on the prosecution in a criminal trial. In other words, the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime. The defense must only prove that there is a reasonable possibility that the defendant did NOT commit the crime. If the prosecution cannot prove that the defendant committed the crime beyond a reasonable doubt, the jury will be instructed to find the defendant not-guilty.
Sheboygan County Prosecutor
For criminal cases in Sheboygan County, the prosecutor will be a representative of Sheboygan County. The Sheboygan County prosecutor reviews all evidence and ultimately decides whether to file or dismiss charges in the case. Most of the time, the prosecutor has leeway in plea negotiations and determines how the case will be prosecuted.
I need help for my Sheboygan County criminal case
The best place to get information about your criminal case is from an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one to represent you which will assist in your case. For general information about your case the Sheboygan County court clerk is able to provide general information about your specific case (e.g. date/time hearings, mandatory appearance, what will take place and what you will be required to do). The court clerk for Sheboygan County will NOT be able to provide legal advice for your case, only an attorney can provide legal advice. The court clerk can provide legal information (like the information found on this website) about your case but cannot provide advice about what you should do in your legal manner.
If guilty, who sentences the defendant?
If the defendant is found guilty after the trial, the defendent will be sentenced. In some cases, this can occur at the same hearing the defendant is found guilty in court, in other cases a separate hearing will be required. Often the prosecution will request a particular sentence for the defendant and the judge will determine whether to enforce this sentence or impose a different sentence for the defendant.
Sheboygan County Criminal Court hearings
Criminal hearings in Sheboygan County will take place at the Sheboygan County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Sheboygan County Criminal Court Locations.
What is Jury Deliberation?
After both the prosecution and defense have presented their cases, the judge in the case will provide instructions to the jury about what they must decide. The jury will be dismissed to the jury room where they will deliberate about the guilt or innocence of the defendant. After reaching a unaminous decision, they return their decision to the court where it is read aloud in the courtroom. If the jury is unable to reach a unaminous decision, the jury is deadlocked, also known as a hung jury, in which a mistrial will be declared.
Can I request a Plea Agreement?
In Sheboygan County you may be able to enter into a plea agreement depending upon the severity of the charges. It is also dependant upon the prosecution willing to accept a plea agreement. You can ask your attorney to attempt to negotiate a plea agreement with the prosecution to avoid having a jury trial along with the potential for a more serious sentence. Approximately 9 out of 10 criminal cases usually end in a plea agreement.
What happens in Sheboygan County at an arraignment?
In Sheboygan County the defendant is brought into court and informed by the judge of the charges that have been filed against them along with informing them of their rights. At this time, the defendant can plead guilty, not guilty or no contest. If the defendant pleads guilty or no contest, there will be no trial and the defendant may be sentenced immediately or at a later date. If the defendant pleads not guilty a trial date is set.
What if I can’t afford an attorney?
The 6th Amendment guarantees you the right to an attorney whether or not you can afford one. If you cannot afford one, a public defender will be appointed by the court to represent you.
Appealing a Criminal Conviciton
A defendant may appeal a criminal conviction to an appellate court. In an appeal, the actual trial is not redone, but the appellate court hears arguments that the criminal case was not handled in a legal manner at the original criminal court. The appellate court can either uphold the conviction, or determine that errors were made and may request a retrial, a resentencing of the defendant or that the charges be dismissed.
Mandatory Appearances in Sheboygan County Criminal Court
At a mandatory or required court appearance in Sheboygan County, the defendant must appear before the court. In the event of a “Failure to Appear” the judge may issue a warrant for the arrest of the defendant. Note: not all criminal hearings are mandatory, in a non-mandatory hearing an attorney may appear on your behalf without you being in court.
Jury by Trial Right
The US Constitution (Article 3 along with the 6th Amendment) ensures an accused defendant the right to a jury trial. This applies to crimes that have a $500 fine or a potential sentence of six months in jail (aka Serious Crimes). This right to trial by jury can also be waived by a defendant.
Sheboygan County Criminal Court Locations
Sheboygan County Circuit Court
Address: 615 North 6th Street, Sheboygan WI 53081
Phone: 920-459-3068 Fax: 920-459-3921
City of Plymouth Municipal Court
Address: 128 Smith Street, Room 302, PO Box 218, Plymouth WI 53073
Phone: 920-893-1271 Ext. 318
City of Sheboygan Falls Municipal Court
Address: 375 Buffalo Street, PO Box 186, Sheboygan Falls WI 53085
Phone: 920-467-0763 Fax: 920-467-2847
Sheboygan & Kohler Joint Court Municipal Court
Address: 1315 North 23rd Street, Sheboygan WI 53081
Phone: 920-459-0212 Fax: 920-459-0217
Village of Elkhart Lake Municipal Court
Address: 84 North Lake Street, PO Box 412, Elkhart Lake WI 53020
Phone: 920-876-2244 Fax: 920-876-2795